Highland Kites EP “I’m Not Weak”

Highland Kites EP "I'm Not Weak"

The new Highland Kites EP “I’m Not Weak” begins with Nothing To Say. This track is built upon powerful, female vocals that have an equally assertive set of drums as their counterpoint. There are hints to acts like The Cranberries, Milky Chance, and Sarah McLachlan. The two-part dynamic between the guitars and the heartbeat-like drums establish Monster in a wholly different avenue than I’m Not Weak. The airy, ethereal vocals that reside above the instrumentation are paired with stretched-out and haunting guitars. 

Temporary Life is another stylistic shift for Highland Kites. While there is still the nucleus of twee / indie pop that have fueled the first two singles on I’m Not Weak, the sweeping synthesizers that reside at the high end of the track provide this single with a new wave sound. This is the sort of music that speaks to all generations equally well, and I feel it is this versatility that makes listening to the I’m Not Weak album such a rewarding event. You’ll Never Know takes a more stripped-down sound; the initial vocal statement showcases a common sentiment – there is more to the individual that a simple meeting or date would entail. The EP ends with the titular single, a song that highlights the vocals through an extended instrumental section. The momentum gradually increases as the bass / drum dynamic creates a hooky, funky dynamic. The vocals take up this challenge, moving into a darker, more emotive sort of sound. Psychedelic rock and alt-rock styles are taken up in a fashion befitting the continually-shifting style of the Highland Kites. Few bands are able to make a cogent and coherent statement with their EP, but this band is able to provide a tremendous introduction to listeners all in the space of five songs.

Top Tracks: Temporary Life, You’ll Never Know

Rating: 8.6/10

Highland Kites EP “I’m Not Weak” / 2017 Self Released / 5 Tracks / https://soundcloud.com/highland-kites

Author: James McQuiston

Ph.D. in Political Science, Kent State University. I have been the editor at NeuFutur / neufutur.com since I was 15. Looking for new staff members all the time; email me if you are interested. Thanks!

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